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News
CMS offers holiday sale on audit appeals
By Modern Healthcare | August 30, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
In a pre-Labor Day weekend bid to lower its backlog of contentious payment disputes, the CMS late Friday offered to pay hospitals 68% of all medical claims appealed by the service providers after having been rejected by outside auditors.
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Magazine
Outsourcing lab services can save money, but it's not that simple
By Jaimy Lee | August 30, 2014 | Print Magazine Print Magazine Subscription Details
Hospitals increasingly are outsourcing nonclinical services such as laundry and food to save money. Now, some are turning the cost spotlight on clinical services such as labs and diagnostic imaging. But such moves require hospitals to evaluate service and quality issues.
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Magazine
Physician payment website due for more outages, and other briefs
By Modern Healthcare | August 30, 2014 | Print Magazine Print Magazine Subscription Details
The troubled Open Payments website is encountering a bit more turbulence. The CMS announced last week that it plans upcoming outages for the site and that downtime would be used for “scheduled maintenance upgrades.”
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Magazine
Providers wary of Medicare kidney-care ACO initiative
By Sabriya Rice | August 30, 2014 | Print Magazine Print Magazine Subscription Details
Kidney-care providers are raising questions about the payment provisions and quality measures to be used in a Medicare initiative scheduled to start in January that will test accountable care models for patients with end-stage renal disease.
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News
More Medicare star ratings coming soon—unless providers can put the brakes on
By Sabriya Rice | August 30, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
Hospital groups and dialysis and home care providers are warning that a five-star rating system the CMS plans to apply to them as early as this fall is more likely to confuse consumers than help them meaningfully compare providers' quality and safety.
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Information
Carol Solomon: targeting chronic illness in New Orleans
By Mike Mitka | August 29, 2014
Cajun and Creole foods and a “let the good times roll” attitude make New Orleans and its surrounding parishes a great place to visit, but they're also among the contributing factors making it difficult for residents to maintain healthy lifestyles. Statewide figures show Louisiana has...
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News
Healthcare associations wary of CMS policy and payment changes
By Andis Robeznieks | August 29, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
Comments due Tuesday on the proposed 2015 Medicare physician fee schedule are likely to include a range of concerns from healthcare groups, from reporting and documentation requirements to that annual provider wish, repeal of the Medicare sustainable growth-rate physician payment formula.
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Information
Jim Walton: pursuing equity in healthcare access
By Mike Mitka | August 29, 2014
Serving people in need has always been a core principle for Dr. Jim Walton. It's one reason he chose medicine as his vocation, believing in the power of the personal physician relationship to improve the well-being of the community, one patient at a time.
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Vital Signs
Defense contractors storm the Obamacare contract beach
By Bob Herman | August 28, 2014
HHS' Office of Inspector General released a report this week showing a chorus of companies is being paid to build and maintain HealthCare.gov. The familiar names were there, but two companies in particular raised an eyebrow.
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News
Short-term Medicare and Medicaid spending to dip, CBO projects
By Paul Demko | August 28, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
Spending on Medicare and Medicaid is expected to be roughly $100 billion less than previously anticipated over the next decade in large part because of reductions in the cost of labor and medical services, according to the latest analysis from the Congressional Budget Office.
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